Updates from December, 2012 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 19:23 on 2012/12/31 Permalink | Reply  

    The first phase of the Kyoto Protocol treaty ends Monday with 58% more carbon emissions being produced now than in 1990 instead of the 5% reduction that was hoped for. In the Guardian UK, George Monbiot says governments and media have turned their back on the natural world.

     
  • Kate 13:09 on 2012/12/31 Permalink | Reply  

    The environmental cleanup of the Technoparc, constantly leaking toxins into the river, has been delayed for another five years while different levels of government squabble over who pays the bills. (Which alone must run up some fat lawyers’ invoices, too.)

     
    • Doobish 22:06 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      It’s a gross document to read, I know, but I feel compelled to link to it anyway. As an example of just how stupid a bed-shitting animal we humans are.

      http://www.cec.org/Storage/74/6784_TechnoparcFR_en.pdf

    • Cyril Arnaud 13:46 on 2013/01/07 Permalink

      Just to let you know : Technoparc Montreal is completely unrelated to the old Technoparc, now named Parc d’entreprises de la Pointe-Saint-Charles.
      Technoparc Montreal is a technological park dedicated to research and development. On our site we have several big companies and engineering and research offices and laboratories.
      Could you please change the title and the content of your article to be more accurate ?Thanks

  • Kate 11:09 on 2012/12/31 Permalink | Reply  

    One third of the snow has been picked up – CBC radio this morning made it sound like most of the work today is being done on highways. (I still don’t have a sidewalk.) As many as 200 dump trucks an hour are lining up to discharge snow into the Saint-Michel quarry, and it takes no more than 2 to 3 minutes for a snowblower going flat out to fill up a big truck.

    Snow clearance will pause this evening and resume the morning of the 2nd, although it will not be interrupted in Ville-Marie.

     
    • Marc 14:14 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Numerous signs were put up in NDG. Snow not removed. Signs came down. A couple side streets have been partially done but that’s all.

    • Ian 15:00 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

    • Mark 16:14 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      I think the main problem with the sidewalks is that they are cleaned with small plows and not snowblowers. That’s fine if there’s a little snow, but with all the snow banks jutting well into the street, I can’t imagine the sidewalk plows being terribly effective. They can’t just push all the snow to the end of the block.

    • Kate 16:21 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Mark, a few streets had their sidewalks cleaned earlier today east of me (although not mine yet) and someone described it to me as being done with a small snowblower, not a plow, because – as you say – we’re rather beyond the small chenillette stage now.

    • Mark 16:51 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Huh the city deployed snowblowers? Interesting. I figured they would just wait until the street was plowed (since they plow the sidewalks at the same time).

      I don’t think very many, if any, sidewalks in NDG have been plowed except for where the streets were too., Finally some larger streets are half done, and Cavendish is actually entirely done, which is odd, given that Sherbrooke and Monkland are used more, particularly by pedestrians. Then again, I guess Cavendish is the main access to the 20 west… Oh well, I guess someone has their reasons… maybe.

  • Kate 10:23 on 2012/12/31 Permalink | Reply  

    The Idle No More movement blocked Via trains Sunday night between Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto for more than three hours. Here’s a backgrounder on the many bits in Bill C-45, one of the Tories’ pet omnibus bills, that they are objecting to.

     
    • walkerp 10:28 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      I support them, but also glad our train came in on Saturday! phew.

    • Noah 11:15 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      The student movement and the PQ capitulating/pandering to them proved that this kind of crap works. They should be arrested for blocking trains, not celebrated.

      I’m not saying their message isn’t right – I’m not saying the government is right about what it’s doing, but this is not the right way to get yourself heard. There’s an aboriginal affairs minister for a reason – you don’t block trains and threaten to kill yourself to get a meeting at the top of the food chain.

      As an Anglo Montrealer, if I wanted to get the PQ’s attention, I wouldn’t starve myself on the Plains of Abraham or block trains until Pauline Marois capitulated (although the PQ LOVES to capitulate to protesters!) – I’d get a meeting with JF Lisee. That’s why there’s a minister for Montreal and Anglos.

      Same goes for natives. They have legit gripes, but this is not the way to go about voicing them.

    • Kate 11:48 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      After decades dealing with the official structures they’re still living in rural slums and treated like dirt. If you’re getting nowhere after trying the official method for generations, you either lie down and die, or you organize for change.

      I give them big props for also sticking up for principles like sustainable development that many of us are too apathetic or too greedy to agitate for.

    • Noah 11:52 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      What have they been doing with the millions and millions and millions of dollars they’ve been sent? I’m not asking that sarcastically – I genuinely don’t know.

      I will never support civil disobedience on the level of Idle No More or the GGI protesters. Holding society hostage for your own cause is never just in my opinion.

    • C_Erb 12:08 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      I would assume the “millions and millions and millions of dollars” are being spent on services just as non-Native people in this country use the billions of dollars allocated to them. This article breaks down how the money allocated to Native people isn’t actually that much http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/chelsea-vowel/attawapiskat-emergency_b_1127066.html

    • qatzelok 12:17 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      It’s appropriate that this human-rights-theft happens right after Harper voted AGAINST even a limited recognition of Palestine. Where corporatism rears its ugly face, there are no human rights – only opportunism and the manufactured racism that helps shareholders appropriate maximum resources.

    • Kate 13:01 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      C_Erb, I was just coming here to post that. Thank you.

    • walkerp 15:05 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Peaceful demonstration is a fundamental and integral part of democracy. When the lines of communication within government structures are ineffective, you have to go outside of them to force for effective change. That is freedom. The head of major oil corporations have no problem getting a meeting with the appropriate important people in government. Aboriginal rights activists do not have such access. If they did, they wouldn’t be blocking trains.

      Noah, do you know any native people? Have you been to a reservation? They don’t have a fraction of the infrastructure that we have, even less of the opportunity. And that doesn’t even take into account how psychically damaged their entire society is by the history imposed upon them.

      How do you think you would handle your finances if you had been taken out of your home at the age of 6, sent to a faraway school where you weren’t allowed to speak english or practice any of your traditions, repeatedly raped and beaten and then sent back to your original home to where there are no jobs or vocations for you to follow?

    • Bill Binns 16:10 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      @Walkerp – I can’t help but wonder if you would be so quick to defend these tactics if you did not support the cause. Should the KKK block train tracks if they feel that the legitimate political process is not working for them?

    • Ian 16:21 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      @Bill that would never happen because the KKK is illegal here. ;)

    • walkerp 14:39 on 2013/01/01 Permalink

      Conveniently for me (but not happily), the groups that I support are the ones that are getting screwed. Actually makes sense since that is generally why I support them, being in favour of a fair and just society and all.

      But yes, I do support the right for any group that feels it does not have fair access to the political process to demonstrate in a peaceful manner.

    • qatzelok 13:31 on 2013/01/03 Permalink

      @ Noah: “There’s an aboriginal affairs minister for a reason”

      Yes, and you have the capacity to block traffic and paint signs for a reason as well. The state is NOT doing a good job, and its institutions are failing. This state includes commerce, and it is commerce that demands permanent transport infrastructure, as well as pipelines and free trade deals.

  • Kate 17:20 on 2012/12/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Chris Hadfield, currently captaining the space station, posts this photo of the south shore Sunday afternoon.

     
    • Doobish 17:54 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Tweeting from space. What an age we live in.

    • qatzelok 12:21 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      This kick-ass-vehicle-driving hero is an inspiration to all SUV-driving commuters: Celebrate your pioneering spirit every morning in the Decarie trench!

  • Kate 12:25 on 2012/12/30 Permalink | Reply  

    As of Sunday 27% of the snow has been cleared since Thursday’s storm. The Gazette slaps a disapproving headline on a piece about the mandatory break for snow workers over New Year’s.

    That said, I’m not happy about my street. Yes, I know there’s a lot to do, but room was plowed for cars almost right away, yet four days later sidewalks are still nonexistent – in fact, in some spots they’ve been piled with extra snow from people digging cars out.

    I need to go get groceries and will have to wallow or trudge through enough snow to make me white to the hips; older people on my street have been shut in since Thursday and may not be able to get out for another four to five days.

     
    • jeather 13:25 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      They cleared my sidewalks quite quickly, but the snow slid back onto there. Still, it’s entirely walkable, more so than St-Antoine is, which is odd and rather irritating. I’m not sure why my street gets done so fast, because I can’t imagine what about it is a priority (very small, no bus routes) — my only guess is that the trucks go up it to avoid getting stuck in the traffic on the bigger street parallel to me.

    • Marc 13:37 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      I noticed while out walking on Monkland (two bus routes and a designated emergency vehicle corridor), nothing has been done yet.

    • Doobish 20:09 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Seems to be taking forever to clear away the mess, doesn’t it? It’s been three days in a row now I’ve been trucking to and from work on the actual Cote-de-Liesse service road, for lack of a useable sidewalk. Thank Christ the traffic’s been light.

      At least the snowthrowers are equipped with the walk-ahead look-out dudes now. The last kind of news story I’d want to read about this time of year is the one involving pink snowfort-building child slush.

    • dwgs 22:10 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      My question is this, if the snow removal is done by private contractors what exactly have the Ville de Montreal employees been doing for the last 72 hours and what will they be doing for the next 72? Driving one of the kids to a hockey game today through a good stretch of NDG and Cote des Neiges there was not one sidewalk plowed and the streets looked like they hadn’t been touched since maybe having had one quick pass during the storm. Two ruts for the wheels with enough snow in the middle that it constantly scraped against the bottom of my car.

    • walkerp 09:57 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      I was in Toronto over xmas week and they got about 10 cm or so, a lot for them. They don’t have snow removal there, only plowing and nothing for the sidewalks. When I stepped out of the house we were staying at in The Annex, which is probably somewhat like the Plateau in terms of location and demographics, at around 9:30 am I noticed that the neighbours on either side of us had not only cleared their walkway but also the sidewalk. By the afternoon, about 3/4 of the sidewalk had been shoveled and swept by the homeowners.

      While the quantity was a lot less, I still think there is something that Montreal could learn from that.

    • Carrie 10:14 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      This is another symptom of the inherent problems with Quebec. While I’m not a fan of the Gazette by any stretch of the imagination, I happen to agree with their disapproval. After a major snowstorm, clean-up is “suspended” for 36 hrs. This is frankly, bizarre. Why wouldn’t they hire a bunch of part-time people (there is a lot of unemployment here) to help them get the job done faster in the interim? Hire a bunch of unemployed, able bodied people and keep going. We know it’s a lot of snow but I can’t imagine any other jurisdiction suspending clean-up after say, a hurricane. If we were to now have freezing rain, it would be even more of a mess.

    • walkerp 10:19 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Yes, it is odd. Given that there is plenty of down time in the snow removal business, shouldn’t breaks be suspended when the work demand is at its highest?

      At the same time, I continue to hammer on the theme that we should take responsibility ourselves for the snow cleanup in our neighbourhoods.

    • Carrie 10:40 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      I agree. Shovelling the sidewalks in front of your residence should be mandatory. Where I live, the street was done once, probably halfway through the storm (I was out of town). You have to climb over piles of now hardening snow to get to your walkway. It strikes me as absurd. What gets me more is that no one appears to be considering all the old folks stranded in their apartments, or the disabled. It’s a blatantly selfish and shameless decision holiday or labour laws notwithstanding.

    • Kate 10:49 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Consider my block. At least half the people living on my side of the street are elderly and can’t be expected to shovel. Some of them pay people to clear their stairs but normally the city does the sidewalk, because if each of these households paid a different contractor to do their bit of sidewalk, it would be done in irregular segments and to different standards and you’d probably get squabbles over things like contractors moving snow onto other people’s property. The most logical solution is to pay someone with a machine to do the whole thing at once, which is exactly what normally happens – although it hasn’t happened here yet since the storm on Thursday.

      And then, who’s responsible? I rent a flat on the ground floor of a double triplex. The landlord doesn’t live in the building. I clear the steps and the short front walk (and my next door neighbour gets a free ride, but that’s another story). But who would you make responsible for the sidewalk? Again, somebody would have to pay for a contractor, but once you’re paying for contractors you might as well do it collectively. Which is what we do.

      The suspension of the snow clearance is for safety. Many of those guys are driving behemoth machines and it’s not a great idea to make them do it when short of sleep. But what I don’t understand is why there can’t be more than one team: why does the machinery have to lie idle for the same period if you could bring in a relief team?

    • jeather 10:50 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      If you want to consider the elderly and the disabled, requiring them to shovel isn’t particularly useful (they are least likely to be able to pay someone, and you cannot oblige neighbourliness). And it doesn’t necessarily work — I heard all sorts of complaints from Halifax, where you had something like 3 days to shovel, and if snow fell again on day three, well, then you get another three days. Sidewalks are a public good, and if streets should be cleared by some level of the government, sidewalks even more so. Doing just streets ensures that people are more likely to drive, because walking and taking public transit both need sidewalks, which we’ve just shown aren’t all that important, not compared to roads.

      And I don’t begrudge the cleaners their time off. But just because the labour laws (correctly) require them to be well rested while driving heavy machinery doesn’t mean that the way the cleanup has been handled is ideal. I suspect there are union regulations against hiring temps, though.

    • Daisy 11:56 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Having people shovel the sidewalks themselves really only works in places where almost everyone drives everywhere and therefore the sidewalks are not used much if at all. I used to live somewhere like that and it was very unpleasant as a pedestrian. Here in Montreal you just pick a street that has had its sidewalks cleared and walk down it until you get to another one. A street has either had its sidewalks cleared or it hasn’t. With the other systen you walk along the sidewalk, and one house has cleared but the next hasn’t, this one has, this one hasn’t, etc. There is no way that you can just take a glance down a street and know thatnthe whole street has been done like you can here. Yes, sidewalks are definitely a public good.

      In St. Lambert the city only clears the sidewalk on one side of the street, all winter long. So annoying.

    • Kevin 14:07 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      In NYC, it is the law that you have to shovel your own damn sidewalk, and believe me @Daisy, nobody walks more than New Yorkers. And they are not even allowed to let 5 cm accumulate.

    • Philippe 13:00 on 2013/01/02 Permalink

      Isn’t this a case of apples and oranges though? NYC receives relatively little snow every winter, and I suspect periods of snowfall are followed by periods of melting, which reduces the need for snow removal. After a good Montreal snow storm, I don’t see where all that snow would have to be shoveled to for there to be no need for snow trucks.

  • Kate 11:55 on 2012/12/30 Permalink | Reply  

    Nice slow-season piece about a man who still delivers milk door to door in NDG.

     
  • Kate 11:54 on 2012/12/30 Permalink | Reply  

    A brief but cogent piece nods to the fact that Montrealers can sometimes save money on travel by crossing the border and flying out of Plattsburgh or Burlington instead of YUL.

     
    • Ant6n 12:46 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Or NYC. One can also save money getting a multi-city ticket with two legs, where the first leg starts in the US, and the second leg ends in Montreal. Even with the cost of a train/bus ticket to the US.

    • Marc 13:35 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      I’ve used the Burlington (BTV) airport a few times. The same trip priced from YUL with the same airline was about $400 more.

    • Kate 14:52 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      What about the extra hassle of being grilled by US border people? Worth the bargain?

    • Bert 16:26 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Getting grilled at YUL, or at Lacolle or at the Burlington crossing, is just about the same. At least at YUL, the ADMTL staff have a bit of an understanding that you have a flight to catch. You can get help from them, moving you up the line if you are running late. Stuck in traffic at Lacolle, you are stuck. At this time of year you also have to consider the impact that weather can have on your total travel time. The issue is only compounded if you are on a multi-segment flight. Miss one segment and the rest of your travels can be a nightmare.

      I went through Albany a few years ago and I would not do it again. Yes, it is much further than Platsburg or Burlington, the basic hurdles are the same. Parking was about half price (to YUL multi-level parking), though I could have gotten a “free” ride here. The one-way door-to-door was +-4 hours and the flight time about the same. In my case the return flight options, from Las Vegas, arrived at 23h30. The Adirondacks in winter at 01h00…. I prefer my odds at the craps tables!

      I *DID* get to have breakfast at the Great Escape, for all you WPTZ watchers!

      I can sympathize with people who need to travel who need to save every cent they can. (but who really NEEDS to travel?) But, for me, my time (and risk) is worth more than the savings offered flying out of BTV or PBG or even ALB. Saving money is one thing, but all the extra risk of delay, for me, is not worth it.

    • Philip 17:15 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Definitely a money-saver for people, especially if you don’t have a car. It’s cheaper to take the Greyhound to Burlington (with one or two checked bags and a carry-on) than it is to take a cab to Dorval ($26 versus something like $39). I’ve never had, or seen anyone have, a problem at the Lacolle/Champlain crossing (or Phillipsburg for that matter) and the Burlington airport is one of the cleanest and friendliest places you can imagine. Add that to the fact that the plane ticket price differences is usually as steep as $300 (if not more), I don’t see why anyone wanting to get anywhere in the States would bother with YUL.

    • Ian 09:23 on 2012/12/31 Permalink

      Wow, I had no idea it was so inexpensive to get to Burlington. Thanks for the tip, folks!

  • Kate 21:54 on 2012/12/29 Permalink | Reply  

    There’s to be a big open-air New Year party at the Old Port. cultmontreal has a party guide; various parties are listed on nightlife.ca; offerings in Old Montreal. I will and add more parties and lists into this post as I find them.

     
  • Kate 20:59 on 2012/12/29 Permalink | Reply  

    A man in a wheelchair was hit by an STM bus at de Maisonneuve and Saint-Laurent Saturday afternoon and badly injured. (I don’t know how anyone in a wheelchair would hope to get around at all at the moment.)

     
  • Kate 13:37 on 2012/12/29 Permalink | Reply  

    More snow expected Saturday evening and overnight may slow down the clearance exercise, now announced as probably taking more than a week to complete and likely to cost $25 million.

    The Globe and Mail compares this week’s storm to the famous storm of the century in March 1971 in which 17 people died. I’ve seen a few discussions about why our storm has been less damaging – everything from better snow tires to having it happen during holiday time to the observation that the 1971 storm was accompanied by much stronger winds.

    La Presse has a good terse snow removal Q&A which explains snow routes and why the workers get a day off, and CJAD has advice from Canada Post on clearing your front steps for your letter carrier, although I’m vaguely amused by the suburbonormative bit about how “the front door rarely gets any use.” Come downtown and say that.

    A UK media site puts it this way: Cheer up, you could be living in Montreal.

     
    • ProposMontréal 16:11 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      That UK website make it sounds like we are stuck in our houses and can’t get out for the next seven days. Yet, i’m amaze but yet not surprised how the city life was back almost full speed just 24h later. Got to love MTL!

    • Doobish 17:36 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      “suburbonormative”. Outstanding.

    • Ian 19:01 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      I could only get out my back door as of yesterday as the alley was unplowed.

  • Kate 11:09 on 2012/12/29 Permalink | Reply  

    A second monk of the Sainte-Croix order faces pedophilia charges for acts carried out decades ago at Collège Notre-Dame. The order has already paid millions to boys meddled with there as well as at two other schools they ran.

    If an entire order can be made to pay large restitutions covering boys in several locations, can anyone really claim now that this wasn’t systemic? (Although that Gazette item points out that the order was told to pay, apparently it hasn’t paid out a cent yet.)

    Later note: most anglo media are referring to these two Sainte-Croix guys as priests, but francophone media call them frères which is not the same thing. A brother is a monk, a man who takes a vow of celibacy and lives within a religious community, but he isn’t allowed to celebrate Mass, hear confessions or do various other ritual things reserved to priests only.

     
    • Jack 12:14 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      The order of Sante-Croix bought a kids silence for $250,000, which seems to be the M.O. now. My question, since this has been done by other orders in Quebec, Why does it take a story by Enquete to get the police to do their job? What stops them? Why do they only charge these pedophiles after Television reports, literally shames them?
      Secondly note this defence by the good brother of St.Croix,”«Le frère Olivain Leblanc aurait déclaré que la grande majorité, sinon tous les religieux de Sainte-Croix, étaient homosexuels et qu’il n’y avait aucun dommage ni rien de répugnant à cette question» Note the we were all gay so preying on children is natural delusion. This is why celibacy accompanied by misogyny creates the cognitive dissonance for these acts, a belief system built on oppression and shame created this environment. We need more light here.
      http://www.lapresse.ca/actualites/quebec-canada/justice/proces/201212/29/01-4607341-agressions-sexuelles-un-autre-frere-de-sainte-croix-sera-arrete.php

    • Kate 12:50 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Whoa. That’s an incredibly feeble defence from that brother – so many things wrong there. Did it not occur to these men that exercising your sexual desires on non-consenting children was not “celibacy” – that it would have been far less damaging to have relationships with other adults – that because homosexuality was oppressed in society at the time was no excuse to behave the way they did – that nobody forced them to become monks and take those vows, so what the actual fuck here? Sorry, I’m sputtering a bit. Could some men have become brothers because it put them out of society’s eye and gave them access to so much defenseless young male flesh?

      It would be sad and fucked up if these had been victimless crimes, but they were so very much not.

    • Bert 17:34 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Predators migrate to wherever they can find prey that are easier to capture. Just as wolves follow deer (and deer population), owls follow rodents (and rodent population), pedophiles will go to where the picking is easy. Trusting parents in churches, abandoned kids in reformatoreums, kids who can be enticed with other incentives (Maple-Leaf-Gardens, The recent BBC scandal, all the Michael Jackson stories, etc.)

  • Kate 11:05 on 2012/12/29 Permalink | Reply  

    Gentilly-2 stopped producing power Friday night as Pauline Marois kept her promise to close down Quebec’s only nuclear pile. Workers will now dismantle the plant over 18 months.

     
    • Bert 17:26 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      I believe that the next 18 months is only to shut-down, decommission the plant. Dismantling must wait for 40 years, waiting for radioactive decay to work its magic.

      I don’t know if there are more economical ($ per Watt-hour) ways to produce electricity (cradle-to-grave) but how much is it going to cost to replace that capacity? Also, take in to account that extra capacity, that which we do not consume, is sold on other markets, at much higher rates.

    • Kate 18:16 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Yep. 18 months for the plant to be put to bed, so to speak.

      I can’t find a hard number, but Gentilly-2 only ever provided a small percentage of Quebec’s electricity. This CANDU page suggests there was some value for Quebec in having an electricity source close to users rather than far away and connected by long cables, but at great expense and with the usual dangers involved in running a nuke.

      For that matter, the news stories today say it will cost $1.8 billion over 50 years to mothball Gentilly-2, although it would’ve been vastly more if they’d had to refurbish it to keep it running.

      It’s been an expensive exercise in proving that Québec sait faire.

    • Bert 20:05 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Nope, 18 months to be shutdown, to drink he proverbial warm-glass-of-milk. The nuclear disaster is there for another 40 years. 40 years of security, monitoring, etc. 40 years of government workings doing nothing. Only then can the disposal start. IMO, if we push the cleanup disaster back as far as we can, yes to my grandchildren, it can not hurt. There is no imperative to shut it down. It is just posturing.

      When I hear estimates of “vastly”, I “vastly” roll my eyes.

      I must beg your pardon. Nuclear has shown to be a reliable source of energy. It is not at the whims of the wind or water levels or delivery of fossil fuels. Yes, it has other dangers. I agree, nuclear has many risks, and we have seen the result of them in recent years. However, the earthquake and/or tsunami risks are low in this area.

      From what I remember, Gentilly supplied about 3%. As you say, it was primarily aimed at supplying the local smelters (Bécancour, Alma,Saguenay, etc.) and paper mills (Shawinigan, Sherbrooke, etc.)

    • Ant6n 12:52 on 2012/12/30 Permalink

      Nuclear reactors are vulnerable to power outages (Fukoshima).

    • Ian 02:26 on 2013/01/01 Permalink

      The Fukushima Daiichi failure wasn’t due to a power outage except in the most hand-wavey sense – their emergency generators were flooded out due to a tsunami. While I see your point, let’s not over-simplify to the point where your argument can be openly mocked.

  • Kate 19:12 on 2012/12/28 Permalink | Reply  

    The SPCA has to move from its longtime location on Jean-Talon near Namur metro, needing more room in a more animal-friendly setting. The appalling statistic that 97% of landlords disallow pets is mentioned in the closing paragraph, this situation giving rise to the surge of pet abandonment around every July 1 and the SPCA’s need for more room to house animals awaiting adoption.

    The city’s supposed to be working toward operating its own animal pound; I wonder whether these two needs can somehow be brought together for general benefit.

    Also, it’s time the government made a commitment to allow animals in all apartments, within reasonable limits. The benefits for people’s mental health in having animals around are more important socially than any downside.

     
    • jeather 20:08 on 2012/12/28 Permalink

      The SPCA has been in a place way, way, way too small for it for ages now. (I doubt that the number is 97%, but I would believe 75%. I also think a lot of people claim their new landlord won’t allow pets but are lying.)

    • Chris 23:35 on 2012/12/28 Permalink

      That’d be just another reason to get out of the landlord business, and create evermore condo conversions.

    • Susana Machado 00:14 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      I could live with a compromise, like not allow more than one or two animals. When my parents bought the duplex, the upstairs tennant had just left, with his seven cats in a fully carpeted 3 1§2… the place smelled like urine for years after he left…

    • Steph 02:32 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Fortunately La Regie will not evict a tenant (or evict your pet) when his lease specifies no pets. La Regie will make you pay for damages your pet causes though, so stay a responsible pet owner. It feeds a dishonest relationship with your landlord, but that’s your bed.

    • Bill Binns 08:08 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Every building I have lived in here has had a “no pets” line in the lease but has been full of pets anyway. My current building has both a no pets policy as well as a whole set of rules for those who have pets. I think they put the language in the leases so they can kick you out of your pet causes problems. I would be extremely surprised if 97% of the rentals (or even 20%) in the city were actually pet free.

  • Kate 17:05 on 2012/12/28 Permalink | Reply  


    In Villeray late Friday afternoon, things are pretty chaotic on the snow removal front. Transverse streets have some sidewalk space cleared mostly by the treading of many boots. In some spots the snow is kneaded into that treacherous pastry dough texture over ice.

    The parvis of Jarry metro station is a big mess, making me wonder what the STM does about snow clearance and why they haven’t done any here yet.

    The longitudinal streets are sheer chaos. Above is a photo of the sidewalk on Henri-Julien, cleared – if at all – by hand. People shovel their own front steps and walks, and dig out their own cars, sometimes chucking snow onto what ought to be the sidewalk, a phenomenon noted earlier today by reader Pelle Moulante.

    @walkerp, are you reading me these days? You used to suggest people should clear their own sidewalk frontages. On my street today a few people, possibly using small blowers, have done pretty clean jobs of this. Others have shoveled narrow walkways – I did some of that today – and yet others have ignored the situation completely. To be fair, some are elderly and frail. Some might be away for the holidays.

    Pedestrians have two poor choices here: walk in the roadway, which means sliding around in the slick groove left by automobile tires, always prepared to leap aside if a vehicle comes along, or take the unevenly cleared sidewalk path, sometimes walking but sometimes wallowing, ready at any time to topple into a snowbank if one’s footing slips.

    Mostly people seem to be staying in and praying for the chenillette.

     
    • Ian 17:18 on 2012/12/28 Permalink

      The STM didn’t clear anything around Vendome either except directly in front of the door. NDG sidewalks are largely unplowed, too. Here in the Plateau though the major streets are clear and I have seen a guy with a shovel clearing the path around Laurier metro and spreading salt by hand.

    • Hamza 17:50 on 2012/12/28 Permalink

      It’s pretty strange that so little has been done during the night and day after. Walking around NDG I see snow plows and trucks but very little in terms of work being done. Even Sherbrooke W, the main artery of the West End, remains a two-lane thoroughfare with sidewalks looking not too much better than the photo you have.

    • Kate 17:52 on 2012/12/28 Permalink

      Last estimate I saw said it would take four days to clear this away, now La Presse says six and CBC radio news just estimated a week – also acknowledged by CTV. We’ll get a little more snow meantime, too.

    • Pelle Moulante 20:01 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      I have long maintained that the city needs some sidewalk-scale snow-blowers to clean the sidewalks when too much snow is on them for the little bombardier miniplows — which generally do a good job but big snow banks defeat them. We need snow blowers to clean off the sidewalks from all the giant piles of snow put there by the private snow-clearing entrepreneurs who use the sidewalk as their own personal snow dump when a car driveway gets cleared.

      There should be big fines for piling your snow on the sidewalk, and big fines for diagonal parking/street blocking after snowstorms. Both of these should be in the $500 range.

    • Kate 21:58 on 2012/12/29 Permalink

      Pelle Moulante, totally with you on this. Yes, some people need their cars, but everyone needs to walk, and moving your problem snow onto the public sidewalk should mean fines.

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